Tosa Inu: Temperament, Breeders, Price, and Puppies For Sale


Sensitivity to strangers
Affection for family
Suitable for first-time owners
Ease of grooming
Energy level

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Who is the Tosa Inu? It originated in the land of the Rising Sun, known by few outside of Japanese borders.

Today we are going to discover a breed that is not widely known outside of japan, but throughout the years it has been able to capture the world’s attention: we are talking about the Tosa Inu, a dog that belongs to the Pinscher, and Schnauzer group, it is a Swedish herder, and molossoide.

Tosa Inu: Origins

We can mention its oriental origins. Even its name comes from the land of Rising Sun, since this breed originated and developed precisely in the city of Tosa, in the island of Shikoku. The official standard was recognized some time after, in 1982. It is very common to see it in Japan, but this cannot be said to happen worldwide.

The Tosa Inu is undoubtedly a dog of an interesting character and muscular body. Due to this last trait, some consider it a dangerous dog. These are false beliefs, because any specimen owner can confirm that, if kept in optimal conditions, it would not hurt a fly.

But let’s go back to its origins for a second: unfortunately the Tosa Dog was born with just one goal. People tried to develop a perfect breed for dog fighting. Japanese people in those times loved it when it was in action with its silent and elegant appearance, which also was sturdy and robust.

As soon as these combat practices decreased, the Tosa Inu also was about to disappear. This occurred especially at the end of the Second World War. After some time, the Japanese began to breed it again, but with different purposes.

Despite saving it, it remains to be an almost unknown breed outside of Japan, also because of the protectionist nature of this Asian nation. The government always kept them inside national borders, at least until 1972, when the first Tosa Inu couple arrived in Europe.

In the second half of the 20th century, Japanese breeders began to cross it with different European canine breeds.

These include:

These are all large breeds, which have contributed to the birth of the present Tosa Inu. It is a strong dog, but at the same time elegant and with a personality that we are about to analyze in detail.

Tosa Inu: Characteristics

By analyzing for a moment this dog’s imposing body, we can find some characteristics that will make you fall in love with it: from the head which is big and powerful. Its snout is black and the ears hang elegantly. Its eyes are brown and small, its neck is large (one of the most unique traits is its double chin).

Classified as a molossus, morphologically speaking, the Tosa Inu is a dog with a unique appearance. Undoubtedly, it is a large size dog and its body radiates dignity, strength, and elegance. Its physical build is very strong and slim, it is robust and vigorous.

The head is big, with a flat and square mouth, its snout is large and always black. The Tosa Inu’s eyes are pretty small and generally reddish brown, the neck is robust and around the throat it has a little skin that forms particular jowls. Its trot is energetic and ample, it exhibits a strong temperament and strength, if it is male, it will stand at 23 inches (60 cm) at the withers, and weighs around 84 lb (38 kg).

Tosa Inu: Colors

The coat is shiny and short, harsh when touched but it is not bothersome to touch it. The typical color for a Tosa Inu is reddish, with warm tones that highlight its characteristics. We can also find black specimens of this breed, in fact, allowed colors are diverse and not just reddish that remains being the preferred one.

In a typical underlayer, white markings may appear in the body of the dog or red markings may be also present in a white or red first layer. We can also find Tosa Inus with black, yellow, black and brown, reddish, or light tawny with stripes.

Black Tosa Inu: An Alternative Variety from the Original

If you see a huge red dog in the street, it might be a Tosa Inu. However, one can also find the black-colored one, although the “original” remains to be the most appreciated one.

As we have said, there are yellow, brown, and light tawny specimens, all these are allowed in the official standard.

Tosa Inu: Temperament

Let’s begin with the premise that we have emphasized earlier: the Tosa Inu may have any personality, but it can never be considered an innately dangerous dog. Instead, it is very brave, but also balanced and calm. Its main trait is not its aggressiveness. It is a guard dog, protective and a great companion. Unfortunately, nowadays it is still used for dog fighting.

It develops a close relationship with its owner, it follows him or her anywhere, because it feels the almost inherited need to protect him or her. It also distrusts those it does not know. It is not aggressive towards strangers, it simply is distrustful of strangers. It barely barks, it only needs a look to be understood.

It loves to be carrying out activities and running (its athletic results are extraordinary): it is a dog that can adapt to different situations.

Tosa Inu: Breeders

There are Tosa Inu registered breeders. Obviously it is better to trust one than any particular seller.

The best solution is to get in contact with certified and reliable breeders so as to visit them to determine if it is a fit specimen for your needs.

Tosa Inu: Price, and Puppies for Sale

But, how much does a Tosa Inu cost? A puppy of this breed is certainly not cheap, since these are not easy to find. If you find one in a breeding establishment it may cost around 1200 dollars, or 900 English pounds.

An undoubtedly important number, but you will have a very independent, affectionate dog who will give you lots of love.

It is fundamental to buy from a reliable breeder, so as to be sure your puppy has been:

  • Bred to have good health and temperament;
  • Well selected (its parents were chosen without any inherited disease);
  • Properly socialized, so as not to be too fearful or aggressive;
  • Vaccinated and well taken care of.

Besides, if you adopt a puppy, a reliable breeder will provide you with a vet certificate, which states that the animal has been delivered without any disease, completely healthy and dewormed.

You can always ask for pedigree papers, that is otherwise essential: it allows you to verify the animal is pure. An animal with pedigree has certain characteristics that belong to its breed and differentiate it from the rest.

Now that we have cleared all the most important aspects, you can go and find your new 4-legged friend, who is surely waiting for you.

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